I was surprised and pleased when Mitt selected Paul Ryan. He made a clear and serious calculation to abandon the “Obama competency” strategy and to go for substance: entitlement reform. Having the courage to embrace the rail is the first step in solving the deficit, debt, and unfunded liability disasters that loom closer every day. Perhaps we can in fact start to wean people off of government entitlements and raze the Democrat plantation once and for all – oh happy day.
Explaining entitlement reform and government finances in detail should be fertile ground for a Merger and Acquisition guy. In that world, you need to absorb and distill vast amounts of imperfect information, weigh multiple variables, and convince people to make a high stakes decision. I even saw Mitt use the trusty Boston 2×2 box to illustrate a point last week, cool beans. I just wish that Mitt had the philosophical background to give his opponents the “Milton Friedman treatment” and talk about the morality of capitalism.
Fortunately, Democrats continue to ignore the fact that reality and math have de-energized the third rail. The hapless Obama campaign pivoted every gun within hours of Ryan’s selection, blindly firing like Hussein’s anti-air craft batteries trying to shoot down stealth fighters over Baghdad. I can’t wait for the stories this week where Ryan kills millions of people so he can pile their bodies to finish the border fence. Face it, the Chicago thug and his sycophants like Tim Kaine are out of ideas and Greek columns.
And showing the loyalty that a lemming would applaud, our former Gov. Kaine reflexively piled onto Medicare and Social Security attack on Ryan. But in doing so, he made his second major campaign mistake because he undercut his claim to fiscal responsibility and bipartisanship. (His first mistake was getting caught flat footed on sequestration in the Democrat-rich burbs) Kaine’s a smooth talking liberal who only occasionally shows us some ankle like when he called the Tea Party Donner Party cannibals. Keep it coming Governor, the more contrast the better.
Democrats still refuse to accept that a growing number in my generation are acknowledging the damage that wealth transfer schemes, aka entitlements, have done; and that we are trying to redeem ourselves in front of our children – this is what animates the Tea Party. Sadly, we will leave our kids a weaker country, but at least a growing number of us want to show them how to fix it, starting with entitlements.
So here is what I like about Paul Ryan:
- He is on a mission to bring actual needed change. It’s not about him.
- He communicates ideas and counters objections with good cheer. In fact, he thrives on debate.
- He is serious and action oriented. Listen to his opening lines which typically call for a response. You won’t see him warming the crowd with jokes or relying on poll-crafted talking points.
- He addresses the root cause and not symptoms – deficits are primarily a symptom of entitlements.
- He engages and refutes his opponent’s fallacies. I love the way he counters the It’s Bush’s Fault Syndrome with you know Obama had two years of unrestricted freedom and completely ignored Republicans to implement all of his policies, so he by definition owns the results. (Obama is such an amateur that he doesn’t even know how to co-opt the other party.)
- He doesn’t seem to be a creature of DC or have run for Congress to be part of the club, seek notoriety, or embellish his resume. Being home in Wisconsin is more important than hobnobbing with over-educated masterminds on K Street.
- He appears to be man dedicated to traditional values which is a prerequisite to solving our financial mess – separating social and fiscal issues is a false dichotomy.
- He can facilitate a change in Republican legislative leadership, if Mitt will support him.
- He no doubt reads and understands a bill before he votes on it.
- He is not Ivy League educated.
- His election will be a fitting tribute to Jack Kemp’s legacy.
- He complements Mitt’s background by injecting confidence in conservative governing principles. Being a successful businessman could become a negative if Mitt thinks in terms of losing market share and over-filters his words (a common problem with moderates) or if he relies on data more than his instinct.
Here’s what concerns me:
- Romney will get cold feet over the demagoguery and fall back to the “we can grow ourselves out of every problem”. The fact is for 30 years, tax revenue has increased, but Congress has spent exponentially more.
- Romney will abandon the rule of law and go “comprehensive immigration” on us disrespecting everyone who plays by the rules.
- Republican legislators refuse to close ranks around Ryan to protect their status quo. So far, their support has been, shall we say, muted.
- Ron Paul supporters, who claim to be very concerned about fiscal issues, will find some point on which to accuse Ryan of some libertarian heresy and give Obama a half of a vote.
So thank you Gov. Romney for making a bold choice and giving us added confidence in your candidacy. And although this is your ticket allow me be the first to request that your campaign wizards let Ryan be Ryan. He’s earned it.